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Winter with the Writers

spotlight on the craft:: Rollins College annual writing conference::

a festival of literary arts

:: By Kate Sullivan

In February, you'll think, I should've gotten on the plane and spent four weeks in Florida's sleepy town of Winter Park. Then your mind wanders while looking at your winter parka. I'd have a Coco Chanel tan, returning full of Southern gloat and good stories about how Florida looks better than Minnesota. No offense intended for our friends on Lake Minnetonka, but blizzards take vacations in Florida.

Grab your shorts, we're going to the annual writing and reading fest at Winter Park's college of distinction, Rollins College. This is where writers gather for The Thomas P. Johnson Distinguished Visiting Scholars and Artists series. It's the Winter with the Writers program that presents notable artists, authors, actors, and poets. :: Connie May Fowler :: Rollins College ::

Best-selling author and a former Rollins College professor Connie May Fowler, whose quirky and enchanting 2005 novel The Problem with Murmur Lee received great reviews, is the director of this annual event.

Winter With the Writers, A Festival of the Literary Arts, will be held every Thursday in February 2005 in the Bush Auditorium at Rollins College. Master classes are held at 4 p.m. and author readings and discussions are scheduled at 8 p.m. These events are free and open to the public.

The Winter with the Writers program past speakers have included Novelist and Short-Story Writer Edward P. Jones, Novelist and Memoirist Michael Ondaatje, John Berendt, author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil; David Halberstam, author of The Children, The Best and Brightest; Olympia Dukakis, actress and director; Thomas Kenneally, author of Schindler’s List; James Earl Jones, actor and author; Sir Martin Gilbert, Sir Winston Churchill’s official biographer; Lawrence Ferlinghetti, poet; and, Jacob Lawrence, artist.

Located fewer than 50 miles from the Atlantic Ocean and 70 miles from the Gulf of Mexico Winter Park, Florida is also home to interesting museums, nearby golf resorts, and the ever-expanding World of Disney. Each year the Festival of the Literary Arts presents unique experiences each Thursday evening during the month of February. Rollins College is at 1000 Holt Avenue, Winter Park.

For more information, call the event director (407) 691-1159 or the English department (407) 646-2666 or visit the site for the event at www.rollins.edu/winterwiththewriters, but note that the web site requires specific technology (ActiveX and Java) and may not appear on legacy systems that do not employ newer technology.


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